More than 50 million Americans suffer from allergies, the sixth-leading cause of chronic illness in the United States. The experienced team at Premier Allergy and Asthma delivers symptom relief with comprehensive allergy care that includes allergy testing and a customized treatment plan that targets your allergens. If you need help with symptoms such as sneezing, itchy eyes, a runny nose, or skin rash, book an appointment online or call one of the offices in Dublin, Westerville, Canal Winchester, Lancaster, Marysville, Delaware, New Albany, Hilliard, Grove City, and Grandview, Ohio.
Allergies begin when your immune system overreacts to a harmless substance as though it’s a danger to your body. Your body produces antibodies called immunoglobulin E (IgE) that identify that substance, which is now your allergen. Every time you’re exposed to that allergen, IgE triggers the release of chemicals such as histamine that cause your allergy symptoms.
These are the most common types of allergies:
Your allergy may be caused by numerous allergens in each category.
Your symptoms are related to the type of allergy. For example, the airborne substances responsible for environmental allergies, such as pollen, mold, and dust, affect your nose and eyes. By comparison, contact allergens like poison ivy cause skin problems.
As a group, allergies cause symptoms such as:
Allergies to food, insect venom, latex, and drugs may cause a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis causes a wide range of symptoms throughout your body. Symptoms such as hives, dizziness, difficulty breathing, and a swollen tongue develop quickly and escalate rapidly.
Anaphylaxis is a medical emergency with the potential to become life-threatening. If you have an epinephrine pen, you should immediately give yourself an injection and call 911.
If your symptoms are mild and easily relieved with over-the-counter medications, you may not need allergy testing. However, if your doctor recommends immunotherapy to treat frequent or severe symptoms, you need an allergy test to identify your specific allergens.
The team at Premier Allergy and Asthma usually tests for allergies with a skin or patch test. In some cases, you may need a blood test.
Your doctor uses a small plastic device that applies tiny amounts of different allergens to your skin with a slight prick or scratch that allows the substance to get through your skin. If you’re allergic to any of the substances, that spot on your skin develops a slight reaction within 15-20 minutes.
A patch test detects contact allergens that typically cause a delayed reaction. Your doctor places a patch containing allergens on your back. You wear the patch for two days, your doctor checks your skin for a reaction, then you wear it another 3-4 days. If you’re allergic to one of the allergens, you develop blisters, bumps, or swelling.
If you need relief from allergies, call Premier Allergy and Asthma or schedule an appointment online.